Clothes designed to make Mother Nature happy

Newspaper ballgowns, recycled plastic sandals and coats made of wool from "happy and free" sheep – designers are showing clothes to make Mother Nature smile at GreenShows Eco Fashion Week.

After a first run last September, the event's second fashion week kicks off on Sunday, with 10 designers sending models down runways at an East Village building in New York City.

Models will strut their stuff for four days for GreenShows, timed to coincide with stylistas and tastemakers from around the fashion world flocking to New York to view Autumn-Winter 2010 collections on display at Bryant Park. While designer superstars, including Diane von Furstenberg, Isaac Mizrahi, Ralph Lauren, Marc Jacobs and Catherine Malandrino, prepare to unveil their latest collections at New York Fashion Week, Samatha Pleet is putting the final touches to her line.

The 28-year-old designer is planning to show 35 pieces next Tuesday at Eco Fashion Week, which is co-sponsored by natural cosmetics manufacturer Weleda and features hair and make-up demonstrations on the sidelines of the shows.

"You see this parka, it has a cracked paper look," she said, pointing to a light brown matte jacket.

"It's silk created in China, buried in mud for two months, and then they use yams to dye the silk."

Gary Harvey, a British designer who will be showing his recycled material line, has big plans in mind.

"I believe we can contribute to an ethical fashion revolution," he said.

GreenShows organiser Eric Dorfman said he was surprised by the event's success.

 

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